Father Marcelo De Jesumaria, a Catholic priest, has been found guilty on Friday of sexually assaulting a sleeping woman aboard a U.S. Airways flight from Philadelphia to Los Angeles last August. He was convicted by a federal jury after a three-day trial was held, according to the Daily News.
A female passenger awakened to find the priest’s hands on her breast, groin, and buttocks. Documents indicated that the priest touched the woman “with the intent to gratify [his] sexual desire.” The woman reported the assault to the plane’s crew, and when they landed, federal authorities met him at the gate, according to the Huffington Post. De Jesumaria was indicted in October, and the Diocese of San Bernardino removed him immediately from working as a priest when they discovered the charges in November.
FBI Special Agent David Gates noted that the majority of in-flight sexual assaults go unreported, as people don’t expect to be assaulted then, and go their own way post flight. But he encouraged victims to report such assaults, and stated the following according to the Huffington Post.
“No one goes on a plane thinking this is about to happen. If we don’t find our witnesses, or our victims, or our suspects now, and hour from now they will literally be at the four corners of the earth.”
The diocese stated that the future of De Jesumaria’s priesthood will be determined by the Congregation of the Resurrection, the order to which he belongs, and the diocese stated the following according to the Huffington Post.
“The Diocese of San Bernardino considers the actions alleged of Father De Jesumaria in the federal indictment to be sinful and unlawful….We are deeply regretful of any harm that may have occurred as a result of his actions.”
He will be sentenced on August 24, and he can face up to two years in jail. Do you think that the priest should be banished from the priesthood? Should he face jail time? Please leave your comments below.
Another sexual assault resulted in the death of the woman. Mint Hill Police in North Carolina have made an arrest in regards to the sexual assault against 86-year-old Doris Starnes at the nursing home where she resided. Police have arrested 43-year-old Willie Shaw, Jr., who was an employee at the Lawyer’s Glen Nursing Home Center. Starnes was rushed to the hospital on May 14 with what the Lawyer’s Glen staff believed to be internal bleeding. But doctors at a local hospital in Matthews, North Carolina soon discovered that Starnes had been sexually assaulted, and she died two days later as a result of the injuries she sustained, as reported by the Inquisitr.
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